The question is, are other car manufacturers paying close enough attention?
Toyota to bring Scion iQ EV to U.S.
Toyota is bringing its Scion iQ EV battery- electric four-seater city commuter car to the U.S. for car-sharing programs.
The iQ EV features Toyota’s newly developed high-output lithium-ion battery which delivers an electric power consumption rate of 104 Wh/km in a compact and lightweight package. In ideal stop and go driving conditions, the 12 kWh battery provides an estimated range of up to 50 miles on a full charge. The vehicle can be fully charged in approximately three hours at 240V. Its 78-inch wheel base and 13.5 foot turning radius makes the iQ EV highly maneuverable in congested areas where streets are narrow and parking is at a premium.
“Approximately 90 iQ EVs will be available for fleet and car-sharing applications,” said Hostetter. “These programs will further expand Toyota’s comprehensive portfolio of advanced technology vehicles which includes the recently-released RAV4 EV, the Prius Family of gas-electric hybrid vehicles, including the Prius Plug-in Hybrid, and the FCHV-Adv (Fuel Cell Hybrid Vehicle-Advanced).”
The iQ EV is replete with energy conserving features such as regenerative braking, heat pump air conditioning with a pre-conditioning option, LED high-mounted stop light, heated front seats, and a heated windshield defroster.
The iQ EV is equipped with a timer to match charge completion time with the time the vehicle will actually be driven, to help reduce battery degradation. In addition, there are three driving modes to select from: D range controls the vehicle to use the least amount of power during city driving; S range increases acceleration performance for brisker driving; and a B range that maximizes regenerative braking efficiency. Maximum output from the drivetrain is 47 kW (63 hp) with a maximum torque of 120 lbs.-ft. In S range the iQ EV accelerates from zero to 60 mph in 13.4 seconds, and from 30 to 50 mph in seven seconds. Its top speed is 78 mph.
The iQ EV’s styling resembles something from Lego Land. The front bumper contains the charging port lid which emphasizes the EV’s iconic lack of an upper grille. Two exterior colors are available: Silver and Super Red.
The interior features a high-contrast black and white color scheme with metallic and ice-blue accents. There is a leather wrapped steering wheel and white steering pad cover, the contoured center console symbolizes the battery mounted below the floor and the plug patterned seat fabric with blueish-grey and white stitching completes the iconic theme.